The World Bank Predicts That Nigeria Would Get Out Of Recession This Year

The World Bank has predicted that Nigeria will get out of recession and grow its Gross Domestic Product by one per cent this year after plunging into its worst recession in over two decades.

According to the bank,

“Sub-Saharan African growth is expected to pick up modestly to 2.9 per cent in 2017 as the region continues to adjust to lower commodity prices.

Growth in South Africa and oil exporters is expected to be weaker, while growth in economies that are not natural-resource intensive should remain robust.

Growth in South Africa is expected to edge up to a 1.1 per cent pace this year. Nigeria is forecast to rebound from recession and grow at a 1 per cent pace. Angola is projected to expand at a 1.2 per cent pace.”

It also noted in the World Bank’s January 2017 Global Economic Prospects report, growth in emerging market and developing economies as a whole should pick up to 4.2 per cent this year from 3.4 per cent in the year just ended amid modestly rising commodity prices, the bank stated.

Emerging market and developing economy commodity exporters are expected to expand by 2.3 per cent in 2017 after an almost negligible 0.3 per cent pace in 2016 as commodity prices gradually recover and as Russia and Brazil resume growing after recessions.

The outlook was however said to be clouded by uncertainty about policy direction in major economies.

Naira Reaches 500 Per Dollar at Yultide

Although the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN hopefully expected that the exchange rate of the Naira would be stabilised by the influx of the currency from Nigerians in diaspora, the local currency on Saturday depreciated at the parallel market, reaching for N500 per dollar and even more in some places.

The officials had hoped that Nigerians returning home for Christmas would regain at least 25 per cent of what the Naira was exchanging in November.

The Minister for Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, was even quoted recently to have mandated all financial institutions, particularly the CBN, to find an immediate approach of eliminating the gap between the official rates of naira, which hovers around N316 to N320 per dollar to that of the parallel market.

But it was learnt that the latest free-fall of the naira was caused by reduction of volume of dollar supply to the interbank market by CBN beginning on Monday.

Importers , who assailed most outlets where the Bureau de Change businesses exist, said banks failed to meet their forex demand, and that the banks blamed this on failure of CBN to supply the interbank market enough.